GOOD GUYS GETTING BOUNCED BY LIQUEUR LICENCE POLITICS
Published in: The Villager | New York | on January 17, 2013
V TALKING POINT | Manhattan is a small island. Starting in the early 1980s the Lower East Side began to be discovered as valuable property. We witnessed the start of the real estate boom. Property was bought and sold, buildings were being flipped. Property taxes were going up and the increases in commercial rent tax started to equal the price of rent. The amount of rent tenants were paying was not keeping pace with the costs connected to making a good-sized profit from the property. Landlords started using every means possible, legal or illegal, to evict long term tenants.
The power behind the money and the selling off of the community — the section I live in between Houston and Delancey Sts. — seemed to be based on the idea of making it a playground for youth with money. Much to my surprise, at a meeting in 1998, Captain Cooper of the Seventh Precinct, called our area an entertainment zone. Now I know he did not make that term up. How to attract the young as well as make a lot of money? Bars.
So, next came the bars. It seemed anyone could open a bar. The laws, the rules, the regulations that governed who could own a bar and where a bar could be located were all thrown out the window. There were many heroic, intelligent, attempts to limit the number of full liquor licenses for all these new establishments, as well as licenses for beer and wine. Nothing worked. This was going to be a playground for the youth with money, tourists, students, yuppies, mostly people from outside the community.
O.K. already. We are an entertainment zone. I get it. I have to adjust or leave. I decided to stay. But what baffles me is how the licenses are handed out. There’s no question that a new business can still get a full liquor license. But how do the politicians decide who gets and who does not? Very few of the new operators grew up in the community or live here. So why can’t Orlando Rodriguez, Javier Rodriguez and Enrique Cruz get a full liquor license?
These three Hispanic men grew up on Suffolk St. While most of the kids they grew up with ended up hanging on the street, dealing drugs, dying young or going to jail, these three were stay-at-home kids with strict parents. In my part of the Lower East Side there are not many success stories. I have known Orlando and his brother as neighbors, because they own and operate E&S Wholesome, the deli next door to where I live. No question — they’re honest and good people. (See The Villager’s May 28, 2008, article, “L.E.S. success story: Bodegas to Wholesome Foods market.”)
Orlando started working at the age of 14 at Economy Candy, putting in three years there. His brother Ralph owned Ralph’s bodega. When Orlando turned 17 he starting working in the bodega and did that for seven years. Next, he bought his own bodega on Madison St. As the neighborhood changed, Orlando was able to make the transition — he changed with it. He now owns a couple of small stores that cater more to the new world than the old one. He is an L.E.S. success story, as are Javier and Enrique.
For his next business venture, Orlando, in partnership with Enrique and Javier, wants to open a restaurant on Rivington St. between Ludlow and Essex. I am familiar with the building. I asked him why he wants this particular space. The building is a wreck. The last business I remember being there was a house of prostitution. Orlando explained he got a long lease and is willing to do whatever amount of reconstruction it takes to bring the building up to code, and has done all the necessary legal work to allow this.
I have been around this liquor license tomfoolery now for a couple of decades. In the beginning, I, along with a small group of others from my area, fought against the liquor invasion. It became obvious that we were fighting a losing battle. I know that getting a liquor license is tied to community politics. Even recently, I have been surprised as to who gets and who does not get.
But these three guys are local. They are from the hood. They spend their money where they live, and have invested in this community. They are opening a restaurant not a bar. I have never witnessed any kind of stupidity in or around their deli, which is, again, my next-door neighbor.
Over the years I have photographed thousands of people from my area. I am always shocked — when going through the photos with other community people — to see who ended up where. Believe me, these guys are the rare exception to the rule. I can think of some off-the-record reasons, which I will not mention, although it is a part of local politics, why they have been rejected. It’s a sorry state of affairs is all I can say.
dwg | 1 week ago | I think they wanted to be open until 4am which they said would be necessary to make rent. Many residents were okay with a restaurant that closed at midnight and sold beer and wine, but not a full liquor license with a 4am closing. That seemed to be a sticking point.
SEAN | 1 week ago | Im glad that a neighbor like clayton patterson is writing this story and bringing this to light so that the community could see the circus that went on in this full board meeting ORCHESTRATED by CB3's own (SUSAN STETZER). This was not fair to a great person and a loyal and local business man that was born and bread and still living here. I was at both meetings and the applicant had overwhelming support, proof the public interest, which are the only way the cb3 would even consider approval in this area, so after the SLA committee approved them with stipulation on which the applicant agreed and signed too, the stipulations included cutting down hrs to midnight on weekdays and 2am closing on weekends and method of operation as a restaurant only, no dj,no dancing, with a full liquor license. In the full board meeting the chair person GIGI LI ask for an amendment to the already stipulated amendment to cut more hrs and only beer and wine, what she wanted to do was to cripple by setting this place up for failure, how could a fine dinning restaurant not serve there cultural liquor which is (RUM)? These people(GIGI LI,SUSAN STETZER,ALEXANDRA MILITANO) need to be replaced or investigated for what happen to this applicant at this meeting. I also want to thank anne johnson and the rest of the CB3 members in favor of the applicant for speaking out on one of our own. TEAM RODRIGUEZ WE ARE WITH YOU ALL THE WAY!
Victor | 1 week ago | Finally something that speaks more of what is truly being proposed which is a 'Latin Restaurant' NOT a 'Bar' or 'Night Club' like Susan Stetzer and Ms. D. "I wish l.e.s. was the suburbs" Boyd have been alleging and misleading everyone from local residents to local politicians to believe. I support Jose Rodriguez who was born and raised and still lives on the same block since childhood. He has proven that he is a hard working and level headed individual who deserves a fair chance. After all we all live in The United States of America right? Isn't it 'One nation under god'? Apparently not according to Racist Stetzer and D. Boyd who have gone to unprecedented lengths to try to block this restaurant. It is a shame that Politics and racism has gotten in the way of something so positive for the neighborhood. I believe in the real Judge and that's the man that is looking down on us from up above 'God' that he will see to it that this project becomes a reality because after all I was once told by a very wise man 'God don't like ugly' .... May the Lord be with you Jose.
Omar | 1 week ago | I would like to begin this comment by letting everyone know that I'm totally against any and all liquor licenses. I hate the fact that people come to our neighborhood just to get drunk. However, when it comes to guys who were born and bred and still live here and care about this area; I'm all for itl Jose has been nothing bur a gentleman. So what do these implants want to do? We all need to recognize that Jose's kids go to school here and there is no way in hell he wants something bad going on. I love Jose and his family and I will tell those that don't know him to sit down with him for 5 minutes. Then you can make your judgments.
Weston | 1 week ago | OK, so once again, the point has been missed. It's not about whether or not these guys are good guys or not, I'm absolutely sure they are, and it's certainly not about race, which everyone knows is the weakest and most irrelevant card you could possibly play in this debate. It's about whether or not anyone who actually lives on this block (which they do not) wants or needs another nightlife establishment contributing to the weekend drug and alcohol carnival. We do not. Their paid lobbyists and lawyers would have you believe differently (yes, these humble local deli owners, with the substantial help of their financial backers, have hired lawyers and lobbyists to make a case that can't be made on it's own merits, so let's not leave comments about "unprecedented lengths", Victor.) A two-floor restaurant for 200 people that serves liquor until 4AM is much more than a simple restaurant in this neighborhood. Everyone knows that. Even the people that support this restaurant know it. Just look at the other one's just like it less than a block away. There's nothing inherently wrong with a restaurant like that, but we clearly don't want or need another one on this block. It's really that simple. There are plenty of areas throughout the LES that actually need a restaurant, that would welcome a late night destination, so what's so special about this block and this building that needs a complete reconstruction to make usable. Why such lengths? Is it maybe the thousands of people who flock here every weekend to party? Yes, that's exactly what it is, and these guys want to be a part of it. Again, it's really that simple. I get it. But let's keep the conversation on track, stop the name-calling (which I've noticed is only coming from one side of this debate), and consider why this, why here, why now. And as for raising our families in this neighborhood, congratulations, so do we, and we do it a lot closer to this proposed restaurant in "Hell Square" as it's become known, than the people supporting it.
LATIN RESIDENT | 1 week ago | Weston this is about race!!! You obviously did not see the stipulation they agreed to sign, the stipulations say midnite closing on weekdays and 2am closing on weekends no dj,no live music,no dancing, when you sign stipulation with the board and the SLA you have to go by them, if not you will get close down , dont you think? You probably also claiming its gonna be a club and that there closing at 4am, look at the stipulation before you say false accusation like you and the opposers been doing so they could look like the victims and the applicant like the bad guys, Weston just so you know, one must hire a lawyer to present your case to the board and the SLA unless you went to law school then you could go present your own case. Weston I also want you to know there's a person behind all this that has a history of being a "RACIST" the one an only (SUSAN STETZER)!!! You don't want to be on that same boat now do you? So get your facts rite before you start pointing out fake ones....
kwebster | 1 week ago | I wish there was this much uproar and support for the mothers, fathers, young people and youth organizations that met last night to find a way to end the child-on-child violence in our community (the most recent incident happened just a few blocks from this proposed venue).
John | 1 week ago | They don't need the liquor license to be competitive. They need the liquor license to offer authentic latin cuisine. Rum is a part of their cuisine and culture. Have you ever been to a French restaurant that didn't serve wine. Have you ever been to an Italian restaurant that didn't serve wine. Have you ever been to a Japanese restaurant that didn't serve Sake. Have you ever been to a Russian restaurant that didn't serve Vodka. A Latin restaurant cannot be authentic if they don't serve Rum.
emily | 1 week ago | I feel a recent neighborhood backlash against the "we are an entertainment zone" status of our neighborhood. Lots of older people can't more because they can't afford to and the new younger people have decided to get together and make a stand so they can stay. I think we will see more bars refused or closed or more closely monitored. These guys were in the wrong place at the wrong time, it is unfortunate they got caught up in the "Dweller Spring" against the siege on our quality of life. I applaud these young people for organizing, it's time for another different neighborhood to be the new hot spot. Why not go somewhere else where they will be appreciated? And isn't there some question about who the real owners of the proposed establishment are?
emily | 1 week ago | If indeed they are the actual owners, (which I read in the Bowery Boogie is not the case), then it's plain old wrong place, wrong time. Rivington is a particularly bad block and it's their bad luck to be the first of many challenged by this new group. Recently the police are responding better to noise complaints, politicians are stepping up, bar owners are getting worried and residents are getting together. These young Dwellers communicate well and they have gotten their message out. Maybe we just reached the critical mass and it's time to go in the opposite direction back to retail, residential and restaurants that close at 11PM. Time will tell.
Tom | 1 week ago | The premise of this post is absurd. Who cares where these men grew up? A much more pertinent question is whether they live in 'Hell Square' now? Actually, the most important thing to investigate is what the community of Hell Square really wants and needs. Does the writer of this puff piece know how out of control Rivington is right now? He seems to be recommending that unhappy residents leave if they are unhappy with the designation of Hell Square as a party destination: "We are an entertainment zone. I get it. I have to adjust or leave" ... what an appalling point of view.
clayton patterson | 1 week ago | All I can ask is where were all these people when we tried to stop the bars? It was a lonely fight. And it does make a difference that the people are from this community. How many people on this list have lived here even 10 years?
clayton patterson | 1 week ago | I see no reason why Enrique Cruz, Javier and Orlando Rodriquez have to be limited by any of the restrictions that other “bars” are not limited by. Who can forget when the Club at the end of my block, on the corner of Houston and Essex, opened with a full liquor license? They are across the street from a school. They are across the street from a bar. There have been shootings, stabbings, group brawls on the street, an illegal bottle Club- no problem. In fact one night Lincoln Anderson witnessed one linebacker sized drunk patron on the street knocking people senseless. After awhile his pals got him in a cab and he left. No problem with their license. These guys are opening an ethnic restaurant not a bar. What is their problem?
Santiago | 1 week ago | Let's get a petition going that Susan has to go!
Raphael | 1 week ago | I agree. Let's have all the latinos in the neighborhood, send a letter to their reps to have Susan go.
Manny | 1 week ago | Guess what guys? It's an election year. Let's all the Latinos start a chant..... Hell No!!! We won't go till Susan Goes! It sounds good!
Maria | 1 week ago | We are all united in this cause. We are all together now and their are only 200 people here right now. You pissed off the wrong people. Susan has to go and we are not taking no for an answer.
Lorenzo | 1 week ago | We are 40K strong in the L.E.S. This is the straw that broke the Camel's back.
Murphy | 1 week ago | Susan, You really believe that if Jose would have won the vote which he lost by one, you would have written a letter in support. You make me sick. These guys are the real deal. And then when I see you come out in support of a liquor application for Ludlow Stree; I question your intentions. I'm not Latin. Im Irish and have been here for almost 50 years.
Carlos | 1 week ago | Susan, You, Gigi and Alex, are person's non-grata in our community. And you haven't seen the last of us. We will start to get involved in politics. It's your fault. You messed with us. We would stay quiet and let you keep pushing us out, but when you hit one of our star guys, you messed up.
mike | 1 week ago | Susan "Racist" Stetzer needs to go! What we need to do is organize a protest at a CB3 meeting and invite the press
Hector rivera | 1 week ago | This racist woman needs to go now. Who she think she is trying to say who gets what. She thinks she's bloomberg running for his 3rd term not happening. Latinos let's unite and get this woman out of her position,let's send emails,letters,and phone call to our local officials and if they don't do nothing about this matter we won't vote for them. The people to contact is the mayors office,margret chin,Daniel squadron,and our very own Rosie mendez... Latinos stand unite let's unite and fight for one of our own...
Hell Sq. Resident | 1 week ago | Yeah, anyone who stands against a liquor license for new business in Hell Square is a racist. The personal attacks in these comments are unconscionable. This thread is laughable.
sean | 1 week ago | What the headline should say is Susan Stetzer bounce the good guys and neighbors around. No board member alone has gone to these length for one application never, so why to one of our own? A family man with successful businesses in the same area he grew up in and still living in, Why him? We don't need to point out of what's really going on here these actions speak for themselves! P.S. Im going to point out another fact that I would like the answer to, why didn't she take these measures and gone to these lengths when she approved a full liquor license until 4am in a resolution area which she calls "hell square" on ludlow???
LATINO RESIDENT | 1 week ago | Wow you know how to show your true colors, let me guess your last name is (STETZER) or (BOYD). That restaurant your talking about is a dominican restaurant which is a great place, but this restaurant is a fine dinning latin bistro with plates from all over latin america design by yours truly JOHN DELLUCI. Whats sad is that you sound like the only racist just like the people I mention before. I want everyone to read all this and know where all this is going "RACISM" needles to say still exist.
THIS IS FUNNY!LMAO! | 1 week ago | Tom, it sounds like you already have a side. Guess what that sid has been lying from the get. Diem and Susan are two lonlely women who probably wake up every day and look at themselves in the mirror and ask themsleves,: what ever happened to my dreams. Guess what it's not anybody's fault. They are just lonely. So, how is that anybody else's fault. These guys have shown they are the real deal. The problem is that they didn't kiss Susan's ring. Guys, keep doing it the right way. Don't let Susan, stoop you down to her level. I'm sure she wakes up alone and wishes that a man can stand her enough to wake up next to her. Thank god that we are not that desperate!
LATINO RESIDENT | 1 week ago | Weston this is about race!!! You obviously did not see the stipulation they agreed to sign, the stipulations say midnite closing on weekdays and 2am closing on weekends no dj,no live music,no dancing, when you sign stipulation with the board and the SLA you have to go by them, if not you will get close down , dont you think? You probably also claiming its gonna be a club and that there closing at 4am, look at the stipulation before you say false accusation like you and the opposers been doing so they could look like the victims and the applicant like the bad guys, Weston just so you know, one must hire a lawyer to present your case to the board and the SLA unless you went to law school then you could go present your own case. Weston I also want you to know there's a person behind all this that has a history of being a "RACIST" the one an only (SUSAN STETZER)!!! You don't want to be on that same boat now do you? So get your facts rite before you start pointing out fake ones!!!
TITO | 1 week ago | Q: can someone tell me where are the latin opposers? Till this day there are none but there are a lot in support!!! So lets do the math( stetzer and her team-0 RODRIGUEZ TEAM-100)... they should go cry up another tree not this none.
clayton patterson | 1 week ago | I think a part of the reason that the term racist comes up is out of frustration. Someone grows up down here and does everything right and they get pushed to the back of the bus, with numerous excuses, meanwhile new people with no connection to this part of the community get a full liquor license with no problem.
Tim Chavez | 1 week ago | Hey Clayton, thanks for sending me this link. Zoning and Use issues like this really have a negative financial effect on small businesses like the applicants in this case. I personally was prevented from razing n fire damaged small building in Columbus to make an accessory parking lot for the owners larger building that was adjacent. Well, the Downtown commission had an architect that would not reach consensus and the project was tabled. He thought everything should be preserved and the edifice was not even historical. My result was that I got sued by the owner for breach of contract, railroaded by the judge in the case and lost a shit load of money. The result was that the city condemned the building, razed it and it is a parking lot exactly as was planned. Just the damage was on the applicant...me.
Tim Chavez | 1 week ago | My point is that when people get into positions of authority whereby they tap their pencils not taking into account the results of prejudiced or poorly thought out decisions, they hurt others badly. I like how your article really raised a sore spot in your community and actually created an action. Vote them out and surely they know that their decisions will be scrutinized and watched much more closely. Keep up the good work. I had a lot of fun with you last summer at ComFest. Hope to see you soon.
Raymond | 1 week ago | We need a Latin bistro in the lower east side, the 25% of hispanic from this neighborhood have to go to other boroughs or zip codes for this type of dining experience. I don't see what the fuzz is all about give this guy his full liquor license and if he puts his foot in his mouth then he would get what he asked for.
Ruben Garcia | 1 week ago | Im in support of this application. There should be no reason why a restaurant closing at 2am should be a problem to anyone. Why is this such a big thing? Why to a person that gives back to his community,helps out his church's, donates to charity groups and little league team from this neighborhood. Why would people do this. He's a good man and we should stand behind a neighbor like this.
L.E.S resident | 1 week ago | I agree with clayton patterson. Why are other applications being approved in the same area and this one gets denied? Why no to a person that's from this neighborhood and yes to the persons who aren't ? I want more diversity brought to this neighborhood all we have is a bunch of dive bars and other type of cultural menus. I want a latin restaurant brought to this neighborhood especially if it's from a person that's from here.
emily | 1 week ago | What's the truth about who the owners of the establishment are? Misrepresentation is a big deal, especially to agencies like SLA and politicians. The allegation is in this story. http://www.boweryboogie.com/2013/01/opposition-to-106-rivington-gains-support-of-local-politicians/
L.E.S resident | 1 week ago | Emily I been following this discrimination since it started the bowery boogie never interview the applicant. Bowery boogie just posted what the opposers the dwellers lied about. If you want the real story and history just go to any of the stores in your neighborhood that he has and ask him yourself. They are the real deal, don't fool yourself.
sebastian | 1 week ago | This latin restaurant would represent the lower east side do to the fact that its coming from it's very own resident. There's nothing better than a neighbor opening up his own restaurant in his own neighborhood. This story saddens me, that the world has come to this. Im latin and I support this application!!!
tony | 1 week ago | What's wrong with a latin bistro opening up? nothing!!!
jorge medina | week ago | People this applicant is bringing a star chef john delluci to our neighborhood, and also a menu of his families culture with drinks that go with this menu. Why try to destroy him before he even opens?
Robert | 1 week ago | I dont see what all the fuss is about? I actually like the idea of a local resident opening up a nice establishment like this. I bet we can count on him hiring local residents to work in the restaurant. At a time like this that jobs are hard to come by I sincerely support the idea. Im actually surprised and baffled that Susan stetzer would be opposed to this idea. I can also understand the need for the liquor license. I for one like to have a drink with my dinner especially after a long day at work. Good luck guys hopefully I can enjoy a nice glass of Latin rum with my cuisine someday.
emily | 1 week ago | Strange you should focus on Ms. Setzer. She has no vote, either on the SLA Committee or the full board. It's the board members that vote that made the decision. She's probably flattered to be attributed to have super-powers and influence over the votering members of CB3, but they seem like a pretty independent (and large!) group of quirky, unpredictable individuals.
LOVELYLES | 1 week ago | Other where mention besides her, she's the one throwing the rock and pointing the other way. She's has no vote but knows how to swing a vote just like she did in the full board meeting, Lobbing and lying to the other members about the applicant. My question to you emily, Why is this such a big thing when other application in the same area are getting approved? Not only are they getting approved but given 4am license with full liquor. She even lied in the 500 ft rule hearing ,swearing under oath that she didn't know about the changes made in the hours of operation, when she's the one that goes through the applications. Emily save me telling you things you already know just look behind the curtain and see who the real puppet master is. Hint; her name starts with an S_ _ _ _ fill in the blanks!!!
DEAR NEIGHBORS!!! | 1 week ago | How is a person who was born and lives in this neighborhood for decades, is raising his own family now in this neighborhood, has successful businesses in this neighborhood, has given back to charities in his neighborhood, has sponsored little league teams in his neighborhood, has participated in giving school supplies and toys to those in need in his neighborhood, has participated in giving out over 300 turkeys for the holidays in his neighborhood,And is now planning to open a restaurant in his neighborhood. Why would some neighbors and some people from this community would go against a neighbor like this? But allow an outsider to do whatever he pleases with our neighborhood!!!
anthony torres | 1 week ago | I guess cause he's latin? Or they have a personal vendetta for him? There's no reason why a person or neighbor to some, should get denied of opening up a restaurant in his neighborhood. Why him?
Chicana | 1 week ago | Jose is "the Rosa Parks of our neighborhood" kind of offends me--especially today on MLK Day and Obama being sworn in. Rosa Parks refusing to give up her seat in 1955 Montgomery, Alabama is not the same as Jose's "fight" for a liquor license in the "entertainment zone"?!?! The comparison marginalizes Rosa Parks and everyone who sacrificed and fought for ALL of us.
juan | 1 week ago | Enough is enough? Why are they still approving liquor license a few feet from this location and you,the new group,and susan are not bothered about it? That"s what mr. patterson is pointing out here! You want proof attend the cb3 meeting.
Chicana | 1 week ago | Racism should have never been part of this conversation! The fact that it was allowed was a disservice to the many people in this country and around the world who face racism, bigotry , and inequality on a daily basis Mr. Patterson your article though it may not have been your intention--only you know what your true intent was, allowed the supporters of Jose, Javiar, and Enrique -- and dare I say the subjects of this article themselves, a forum to personally attack people and cloud the issue at hand. It was irresponsible of the Villager to allow and encourage this type of incendiary dialogue on its message board. Your role as moderator was not to include your personal opinions, but monitor the dialogue and keep it civil. I applaud Councilwoman Rosie Mendez saying that opposing a liquor licence does not make you a racist , and kudos to Margret Chin for echoing the same sentiments: ►http://www.thelodownny.com/leslog/2013/01/mendez-talk-of-racism-in-106-rivington-controversy-needs-to-stop.html
Mike McG | 1 week ago | While I'm sympathetic to their general situation (though they lose points for their disingenuous use of the race card), I fail to see why they--or the author--is so "baffled" by the situation.
emily | 1 week ago | I agree with you Chicana. The tone was set from the first words, with the headline that set one group apart as the "good guys". The Villager has new owners and maybe they are trying to sell more papers by sensationalizing their content. I doubt if the past Villager leadership would have allowed individual people's names to be used as they were and called racist. And all those SCREAMING CAPITAL LETTERS! What's that about? Pity, if our only local newspaper is going the way of the NY Post. I realize their response will be, "This was an opinion piece." Better editorial judgement should have been made on what is appropriate as an opinion piece. Next they will be saying it's "fair and balanced." I much prefer the in-depth description of this difficult issue in todays Lo-Down blog.
Mike McG | 1 week ago | It's a poorly written column. Not because of the stance it argues, but because it does not address, in any amount, the numerous concerns held by the community. It's poorly-written not because of the one-sided incendiary language, but because it provides little context of the situation today, on that street. It's poorly-written not because it describes the irrelevant background of the proprietors, but because it frames it in a way that makes race the seat of further debate.
Bolivar | 1 week ago | People keep mentioning bars and clubs and fail to realize that this is a restaurant. Until someone can show us otherwise, I will continue to take the guys trying to open this up at their word.
clayton patterson | 1 week ago | Mike McG. IN 1998, 4 of us attending the 7th Precinct Community Council brought up the fact that accompanying all the new bars there was a serious increase in quality of life crimes in our part of the LES- Houston to Delancey. At one meeting were told by Captain Cooper our area had now been designated an Entertainment Zone. As noted earlier the Club that opened at the end of my block was crime central in this part of the hood. Over the years there have been shootings, stabbings, street brawls, an illegal bottle club and so on.
juan | 6 days ago | This whole race thing was made up by the opposing party. I know what the story was. Let's make up these comments that way these latinos look like there throwing in the race card, then susan would play the victim and reaches out to Ms.Mendez a latin council woman, and claims her heart felt story. Convinces ms. Mendez to publicly say to her latinos stop the racism calling, going against a "BAR" is not racist... Nice try guys! I could read between the lines. You are asking why they insist on Hell Square? Well, there are lots of reason's why, Ill give you a few. First reason since this license got denied CB3 has approved several full liquor licenses in which you consider Hell Square, Don't go by what Im saying go look at the CB3 calendar and minutes. Second they have overwhelming support from this community. Third they have other successful businesses in this area. Fourth they live in the neighborhood so they would be more attentive to there business unlike the owners that don't. Fifth they are a restaurant, different from anything on this block an in Hell Square. They are a symbol to this community!!!
Victor | 6 days ago | I applaud Clayton Patterson for writing this article. I don't remember Mike Mcg getting so defensive when all the other articles that were written to favor Susan and her goon squad from the so called LES Dwellers. As a good friend of mine likes to say. HEY MIKE Mcg go that way!!! The numbers speak for themselves and a fine latin restaurant is something I want in MY neighborhood. Oh and yes maybe even a nice glass of RUM from the island where my parents were born would be nice. Thank you very much!!!!